Reynoldsburg News

RHS academies name valedictorians for 2014


Reynoldsburg High School's 449 graduating seniors will wear colorful sashes across their purple robes to signify the four high school academies at the May 27 commencement ceremony.

Seniors from BELL Academy will wear silver; Encore Academy seniors will wear teal; HS2 seniors will wear gold and eSTEM seniors will wear green.

Graduation ceremonies for seniors from all the academies and Everest High School, the district's online school, begin at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 27, at the Jerome Schottenstein Center, 555 Borror Drive, Columbus.

Tricia Moore, district director of partnerships and shared services, said the four academies planned to hold separate ceremonies this week to highlight individual award-winners.

"Each academy wanted to have a special event for their seniors and their families to award local scholarships and recognize each senior in some way," she said. "So far, we know this year's seniors have received more than $6 million in scholarships."

She said the individual ceremonies recognized seniors earning honors diplomas, Presidential Awards of Excellence and students named Distinguished Raider Scholars. They also recognized valedictorians -- seniors who earned GPAs of 4.0 and above.

HS2 Academy valedictorians are Brianna Bridgman, Taylor Corns, Allison Costello, Elizabeth Royster, Raymond Truong and Rachel Witt.

Encore Academy valedictorians are: Katelin Beck, Ryan Campbell, Jacob DeBrock, Alexandra Drabick, Selma Ennin, Robert Harris, Haley Layton, Natalie Love, Kylie Lovsey, Natalie Orr, Kevin Quach, Alyson VanAlmsick and Kimberly Ware.

eSTEM Academy valedictorians are: Marissa Andrews, Kiara Avendano, Bryn Bell, Brittani Briner, Katherine Broehm, Loegan Brzezinski, Marie Daly, Addison Duchesne, Lindsay Elliott, Kyle Feldman, Neil Feldman, Amber Grigley, Kaitlyn Hill, Zachary Kahl, Isaac Kahn, Allison King, Yosef Maher, Tyler McCauley, Harley Parker, Alyssa Rice, Sophia Sobolev and Olivia Suitor.

BELL Academy valedictorians are: Nia Coleman, Kaitlyn Cress, Nathan Smiley, Jordan Watkins and Clayton Young.

This year's ceremony will be the last one for Superintendent Steve Dackin, who retires July 31. He has been district superintendent since 2007.

School board members have credited Dackin for innovative programs that have attracted state and national attention, including the high school's career-based academies and a focus on STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) programs.

New Superintendent Tina Thomas-Manning began working for the district full time May 1.

Dackin said he is impressed with the class of 2014.

"The class of 2014 embodies what we have been trying to accomplish with our academies," he said. "These seniors have been able to craft their educational experiences relating directly to their interests and passions.

"We are closer than ever to having a personalized plan for every student," he said. "These seniors have demonstrated -- more than ever before -- that they have the knowledge and skills to be successful in college and their future careers."

Marcy Raymond, academy STEM leader, said the senior class also served the community.

"This class has had three years in academies; they are ingrained in it," she said. "The class also has a really good handle on community service. Students have been working for our community over the last three years in significant ways."

She said the class has been involved in Raiderthon, BloodWaterMission, Nellie's Catwalk for Kids and College and Community Night.